Sunday, December 1, 2013

Loo Ngan-sin, Nancy 盧雁仙 (1934-1940)

updated December 8, 2013.

Hong Kong's First Woman Registered Dental Surgeon; the First Woman Holder of DDS to Practice in Hong Kong.

Punahou Academy, Hawaii, graduated 1921; Dental Hygienist School, Honolulu 1921-22; DDS, University of Southern California, Los Angeles June 5, 1926. Hong Kong nlt.1934. Wartime whereabouts unknown.

HONG KONG nlt.1934. Registered dental surgeon May 2, 1934, but listed as an Exempted Person [1] 1937-40 [2]. Private practitioner 1934-40, address: #99C Waterloo Road 1934.

b. Honolulu [n.d.]. d/o Joe Loo (b. Heungshan (known as Chungshan (Zhongshan) from 1925) 廣東省香山縣 [n.d.]; Hawaii 1882; land owner) [3] and Choy Shee. Siblings: 1. Loo Sau-ung (b. August 8, 1906, Honolulu - d. March 1, 2002; youngest sister; Punahou Academy; JD (Yale) 1928; moved to Hong Kong ca.1929, m. [s.n.] Chan; Assistant Legal Counsel, William Hunt & Co.; returned Hawaii 1940, admitted to practice law, first Asian woman to practice law in Hawaii, and the first Asian American woman to practice law; Circuit Court Small Estate and Guardianship Division 1943-76; retired 1976.). Four others, two boys two girls [s.n.].

[1] Certificates of Exemption were issued to dental practitioners who lacked the academic qualifications recognized by the Dental Board (essentially the General Medical Council in UK) to qualify to register. Generally speaking, only qualifications awarded by institutions located on the Britain Isles or in British Overseas Territories were recognized. Naturally, there were exceptions, and when such took places, discretion prevailed; how else can it be explained that some graduates of, for example, the University of Pennsylvania were qualified for registration while others weren't. In extreme cases, the status of certain dental practitioners would be switched to that of an exempted person after having been registered as dental surgeons for a number of years, only to be reversed again years later.
[2] The Dental Register 1941 is not available; it is unknown whether or not it actually exists.
[3] Joe Loo might be related to Loo Mu-chun (Lu Muzhen) 盧慕貞, the first wife of Sun Yat-sen, who he 1915 divorced in 1915 to "facilitate" his marriage to Soong Ching-ling. Joe Loo was counted as a friend of Sun's although I found no records that he was a supporter of the Republic Revolution.

Selected bibliography: The Hong Kong Government Gazette, May 4, 1934,#360, #361. Matsuda, Mari J. (Ed.) Called from Within: Early Women Lawyers of Hawaii, Hawaii, Hawaii University Press, 1992, pp.172-173


Post a Comment